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Is there any way to honor AP Principles and have a child fall asleep by himself?

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  • Is there any way to honor AP Principles and have a child fall asleep by himself?

    I have a 27mo. old who falls asleep by nursing or rocking in the chair with DAd. When he has an awakening for nap or in the evening we have to go up and put him back to sleep. This is wrecking our evenings trying to relax. How do we encourage/explain falling back to sleep without us? Once we go to bed for the night he sleeps through the night. ANy book suggestions? I feel like this is something he needs to be able to do on his own at this point.

  • #2
    Have you tried The No Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers, by Elizabeth Pantley? It has suggestions for exactly what you're talking about!

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    • #3
      yes,i did. i am rechecking it out from the library again for a refresher but he just will not go to sleep on his own- then he is perked up because we didn't put him back down and then up for hours.

      I know i'm not suppose to compare, but i know plenty of 2 y/o who go to sleep by themselves and stay asleep after being put to bed. so i don't think i'm too wrong in thinking that a 2 y/o is able to do this

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      • #4
        It sounds like you're ready to "phase yourself out" of the bedtime routine. Have you thought of what you and your husband could each do (because you each have a different approach) to shorten the amount of time you spend actually putting your son to sleep? Like, instead of laying down next to him, can you sit up next to him while he falls asleep? Or instead of rocking him all the way to sleep, can you rock him for a little while, then put him down awake? It is possible to phase yourselves out of the "putting to sleep" part of the routine, but it is a very gradual process and will take a long time (to do it respectfully)!

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        • #5
          It's not so much the bedtime routine as is the waking once he goes to sleep. Now I nurse him to sleep or my husband will rock him to sleep in the chair. He has always wanted someone with him while sleeping. even naps I am with him so my nights are my only down time. we want him to be able to go back to sleep if he has an awakening and we are not there, but how I'm not sure.

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          • #6
            Yeah, that's tough! When he's used to sleeping a certain way for naps and bedtime, it's hard to expect him to be able to do something different just for that one time of night. What I mean is, if you want him to be able to go back to sleep on his own for that night waking, he needs to learn how to go to sleep on his own in general. I totally get that you don't want to spend your evening time putting him down and back down to sleep...evening time is precious! But in order to have him learn how to go back to sleep without you, he needs "practice" at nap times & bedtimes. This is where the gradual adjustment starts with you changing the routine a bit--phasing yourselves out of his falling-asleep process, so that he can do it on his own...anytime!

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            • #7
              Ok- i get what you are saying. so if i'm not ready to do this now, do you think kids who have been nursed/rocked to sleep, eventually go to sleep on their own "when they are ready" or at some point do they need to be "taught" to go to sleep alone by gradually fading out the parents. does that make sense?

              Thank you for your feedback

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              • #8
                I've noticed that as kids (& their parents!) go in & out of phases & stages; we're constantly required to adjust our parenting techniques to their needs & consequent behaviors. So, I think that rocking/ nursing to sleep won't work forever; it'll naturally "run it's course". And you'll have a natural opportunity to try different things for helping him learn go to sleep.

                I encourage parents to go with what works--for everyone. Obvioulsy, if it's not working for the child, we (parents) need to adjust our approach to meet their needs. But, equally important, if something is not working for us, it's OK for us to make a change. It's OK to meet your own needs, like personal time in the evenings!

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